Utah Master Naturalist

Sharing Utah's Natural World

Here at Utah Master Naturalist, our mission is to promote awareness, understanding, and stewardship of Utah’s natural environment. Our programs develop a network of well-informed citizens dedicated to conservation, education, and service within their communities. Through training in the field, in the classroom, and online, Utah Master Naturalists participate in the lifelong pursuit of knowledge and skills.

How to Become a Utah Master Naturalist

Upcoming Courses

Courses are offered throughout the year by many organizations. Courses include an online class and three field days. If you are unable to attend a full course, there is an option to register for the online course only.

Utah Master Naturalist courses for 2023 have come to an end. Course dates and registration for 2024 will be posted in March, however, you can register for an online course at any time. 

Mountain Adventures
Group of people gathered around a mountain lake
Field courses for 2023 have ended. Field courses for 2024 will be posted in March.

Desert Explorations
People gathered around a puddle of water in the desert
Field courses for 2023 have ended. Field courses for 2024 will be posted in March.

Watershed Investigations
Group of people taking measurements around a stream
Field courses for 2023 have ended. Field courses for 2024 will be posted in March.

Dark Sky Observations
Night sky
Field courses for 2023 have ended. Field courses for 2024 will be posted in March.

How to Become a Utah Master Naturalist

You can become a certified Utah Master Naturalist by participating in any course. It is possible to be certified in just one, two, three, or all four courses—Watershed Investigations, Desert Explorations, Mountain Adventures, Dark Sky Observation. Completion of all four courses makes you a fully certified Utah Master Naturalist. Each course includes an online class and three field days. Participants are given access to the online course approximately one month before the start of the field days for which they register. Registration fees are $250 per course, which includes both the online portion and field days.

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Should I enroll in a course?
Utah Master Naturalist is designed for anyone interested in exploring and learning about Utah’s natural world; however, the program is tailored to amateur, volunteer, and possibly even beginning professional naturalists. Many past participants have been educators who are interested in expanding natural science curricula in their classrooms and organizations.

Our assessment and evaluation data have revealed that amateur naturalists not only learn more than professional naturalists, but consistently enjoy the program more. Courses are never about who knows the most. Everyone who enrolls brings with them a unique set of knowledge and experiences, so courses are about sharing our knowledge with each other and learning from everyone’s experiences in Utah’s natural world.

Adolescent students perform field analyses with an adult
How will a course help me?
Utah Master Naturalist courses focus on increasing your knowledge about each of Utah's watershed, mountain, desert, and dark sky systems as a whole. You will learn about, explore, and discuss each system's functions, physical characteristics, representative organisms, management techniques, and current issues. You'll come away with a better understanding of humankind's role in shaping the past and determining the future as stewards of these amazing systems.
You may not be employed as an educator, but we're all educators when we share our interests with others! Each course offers you an opportunity to initiate, continue, and develop your personal journey of knowledge and stewardship of Utah's natural systems. Becoming a Utah Master Naturalist will prepare you to share that knowledge and help others to feel a greater connection to nature.

Two women smiling stand near a pond holding papers and a glass tube
What are the program requirements and benefits?
To become a certified Utah Master Naturalist, you must commit to completing both the online portion and field days for each course. Upon completing the requirements, you will receive a certificate and pin identifying you as a Utah Master Naturalist! However, if you are unable to attend a full course, there is an option to register for just the online portion of the course.

In addition to receiving certification, you will have opportunities to expand your knowledge, interact and network with fellow naturalists, and learn from organizations that need your help in promoting stewardship of Utah’s natural world.

While volunteer hours are not required, we encourage participants to find meaningful ways to share their knowledge.

For formal educators, if cost is a barrier to enrolling in a course, there are a limited number of partial scholarships available. There is also an opportunity to earn three Continuing Education Units (CEUs) from Utah State University for an additional recording fee of $120.


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Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter
1258 Center Dr
Park City, UT 84098

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The Utah Master Naturalist program is a Utah State University Extension certification program that teaches and certifies master naturalist volunteers and professionals. In operation since 2007, Utah Master Naturalist was developed in partnership with over 25 organizations in Utah. Designed as a knowledge-sharing program, certified Utah Master Naturalists promote stewardship of Utah's natural resources within their communities by providing education, outreach, and service.

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